I am one of many that attended every day of the trial and sentencing of Misty Evans.
Evidence actually presented to the jury was far less than existed.
Evans was able to avoid conviction of driving under the influence of alcohol/drugs because she fled from the scene before blood evidence could be obtained.
She was represented by competent counsel before an extremely fair and tolerant Judge. This Judge allowed the jury to make their decision, and then only during sentencing, made it clear that her testimony was not believable.
Misty Evans admitted that she stopped her car, got out and looked for the "deer" she thought she had hit (hard enough to deploy the airbags). When she didn't see anything or anyone, she got back into her car and drove away. Her car drove "normally" after hitting the "deer".
What she left out was that Reuben, over 6' tall, had been trapped/entangled in and under her passenger's side front wheel and was still there when she "looked and saw nothing". She drove forward, pushing Reuben up the road for some distance before he passed completely beneath her car and was left, lifeless, in the road. The physical evidence made this sequence clear: hit, stop, push, and pass under.
Both the Trooper investigating this crime and the Judge agreed that her car could not have driven "normally" as she pushed Reuben up the road and then under her car as Evans had claimed. Anyone who has had anything caught under their car knows the difference. But she couldn't admit it, or wouldn't.
Now, Evans has been released from prison (as I understand it for a second time, the first to be with her ailing mother). Evans wants a different judge, probably because the trial Judge saw her for what she was and did. But that Judge absolutely afforded her a fair trial. And jury instructions are not secret from either the Prosecution or defense prior to their reading. Was her attorney "incompetent"? Was this the same attorney that successfully argued her appeal?
So now Evans can be at home with her family while she awaits further judicial decision.
Does the Jacobs family have such luxury? No! Reuben's Mother, Father, Brother, Sister, Daughter, Grandmother, Aunts, Uncles, and Cousins don't have the luxury of seeing him on 'visiting days'.
The loss of Reuben can only be described as devastating. And I never met him, but wish I had. But I have witnessed the toll that this has taken on his family. That toll is many times greater than an 8 year prison term (especially a women's prison in Indiana, not exactly Pelican Bay). Eventually, her term would have ended.
Justice... justice would have been at least a manslaughter conviction resulting in a sentence of more than 8 years in prison. Not a medical release and an overturned conviction on a technicality.
I can only hope and pray that justice will ultimately prevail in this matter. So often the trial becomes a matter of 'compassion for the living suspect' instead of 'justice for the victim'. As time passes, juries seem to be less sympathetic toward the victim and more benevolent toward the suspect.
From my 25 years of experience in law enforcement, investigating crimes,interviewing the innocent and the guilty, and seeing them through trial, Misty Evans is no different than any other criminal causing the death of another person. She minimizes her involvement and responsibility. She expressed concern only for herself and refuses to accept responsibility for her actions (even when the physical evidence is overwhelming). When they cannot escape conviction, only then do they admit their actions and plea for mercy.
Evans will remain guilty despite these most recent actions. She killed Jesse Reuben Jacobs in a brutal manner and left him alone in the road. Sober, drunk or high on cocaine... she did it. There is no question about that.